Your Dog’s Massage Session
- Before the appointment it is wise to make sure your dog is not ‘uncomfortable’ – meaning it has been to the toilet before settling down for an hour!
- I can collect your vet consent form on the day.
- Our first meeting will be outside and I will ask you to walk, trot and canter your dog while I assess the gait pattern. I may use slow motion video as this tends to make it easier to see subtle areas of concern. We will go over this together.
- We then go inside and I will take a bit of history from you the owner, while your dog gets to have a roam around and settle in our cabin. It is important the dog feels comfortable so we need to give him/her a bit of time.
- Next step is an assessment – dog in standing if possible – and this allows me to pick up any key areas that we will then work on. This involves a 5 minute routine which works from top to toe and also allows the dog to get used to my touch.
- Having shared what I have found, we may then choose to continue treating your dog on the floor – on vet bed – and I will sit alongside and start on the massage session proper. Large breed dogs are best treated on the floor, but medium to small breeds often do well up on the massage couch.
- At this point we may make a decision re muzzling or not and if we decide to do so, I would ask that you the owner put it on as a way of simply being sensible. If we have decided on a muzzle, this is not because we immediately think of your dog as being aggressive. Some techniques can be uncomfortable for them, and a dog’s reflex response may to try and nip rather than say ‘ouch’ as a human may do when you find the spot! Be assured that your dog’s safety and comfort remain uppermost at all times.
- I will then go through a massage session with the dog ideally laying on one side, and we then turn them over for the other. Some dogs don’t settle for a session or two, but don’t worry. This is quite normal and we find a way.
- After the session we will get your dog up, they may want a drink and a shake and water will be provided.
- It is highly possible that they may feel a bit wiped out / tired / reactive – this is called the Herxheimer response and is something all of us go through after we may have had a massage / therapy ourselves. In some dogs, it can manifest as them seeming a bit out of sorts or sleepy and is a sign of a good effect and perfectly normal. If you have any concerns however, please just contact me.
- We will ideally see your dog weekly for three weeks and will then step back to assess how they are doing.
- I am very happy to stay in touch for you to report any concerns or improvements.
- Vet form: Don’t forget to bring your vet consent form to the first session.
- Toilet: Make sure your dog has been to the toilet before the session so he/she is comfortable.
- Lead: We’ll be checking your dog’s gait, so it may be a good idea to bring a lead with you. We do have leads, but your dog may be more relaxed with their own.
- Muzzle: You may not need it, but again, your dog’s comfort is paramount, and using one your dog is familiar with will help him/her relax.
- My Contact Details: It’s perfectly normal for your dog to feel drowsy, or thirsty after a session, but I’m happy for you to contact me if there’s anything you want to ask. My mobile is 07939 540940 or you can email me on firstname.lastname@example.org.